The Cars on the Track go Round and Round
Saturday night I sat and watched the Budweiser Shootout. I first started watching it back in the early 90s. I liked it because it didn't last all day and usually featured some really good racing. You didn't have to worry about the journeyman drivers creating wrecks and could enjoy the best drivers duel it out in a nice quick hour or so of racing.
It's no secret that I think restrictor plate racing is stoopid and unnecessarily dangerous and that we are being cheated out of good racing because of the plates. I can't help but watch a race at Daytona in February. This Saturday we at least got to see plate racing with a sense of speed due to the largest plate size since 1989. When I saw the pack of cars come off turn 4 (yes, they are still in a big pack) what I saw was a pack of cars at least going fast at Daytona. Drivers were even lifting off the gas in turn 3. It was exciting.
It's obvious NASCAR is going to do nothing about the big packs and wrecks but at least they have freed the cars up a bit and allowed the drivers to have some control over their throttles. It was nice to watch a plate race that featured this thing called "racing" that has been missing from plate races recently. Now they can pass without having to wreck each other.
The highlight of the race for me was watching Tony Stewart move through the pack. Sometimes with him it's like watching Dale Sr. work his magic on one of the big tracks. Tony's got balls and skills and knows how to work the air out there. It's a great combination.